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Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Just days after Hillary Clinton said, “Anyone that says that racial discrimination is no longer a problem in American elections must not be paying attention,” Senator Rand Paul has proven her point.

At a speech in Louisville, Kentucky, Paul said, “I don’t think there is objective evidence that we’re precluding African-Americans from voting any longer.”

Apparently, the junior senator from Kentucky missed those reports of Floridians waiting hours and hours in line to vote last November. He hasn’t heard about the study that showed blacks and Latinos waited twice as long as whites to vote. Maybe he hasn’t heard that last year federal courts ruled again and again that states were creating barriers to voting that disproportionately affected people of color. For instance, a federal court found that Texas’ redistricting was “enacted with discriminatory purpose.”

In response to Paul’s comments, The Nation‘s Ari Berman tweeted:

The article he links to breaks down “the country’s worst voter suppression” law, which was just signed by Governor Pat McCrory (R-NC) on Monday, though the governor doesn’t seem to have read it.

“African-Americans are 23 percent of registered voters in the state, but made up 28 percent of early voters in 2012, 33 percent of those who used same-day registration and 34 percent of those without state-issued ID,” Berman writes.

Early voting, same-day registration and voter ID requirements are all part of the monster law that “eliminates practically everything that encourages people to vote in North Carolina, replaced by unnecessary and burdensome new restrictions.”

There’s objective evidence that the law is designed to stop black people from voting. And since the conservatives on the Supreme Court decided that the law that prevented voting discrimination like this was no longer valid, the Department of Justice is having to invent ways to fight it.

However, if Paul wants to be honest, he could make the argument that Texas Republicans have turned to, now that the Justice Department is trying to crack down on its discriminatory practices: We’re only trying to stop Democrats from voting.

Paul could say, “When Republicans get in power, they do everything they can to stop people who aren’t Republicans from voting. And if black people are disproportionately Democrats, they get what they deserve.”

Then he would only be cynical and crude and not unforgivably naive at best… and blatantly dishonest at worst.

Photo: Mark Taylor via Flickr.com

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL)


Twitter has restricted access to a tweet posted Monday by Rep. Matt Gaetz, in which the Florida Republican called for what commenters described as extrajudicial killings of protesters.

"Now that we clearly see Antifa as terrorists, can we hunt them down like we do those in the Middle East?" Gaetz tweeted, joining Donald Trump and other Republicans in blaming anti-fascists for the violence across the country at protests over the death of George Floyd.

Floyd, an unarmed black man, died after a white police officer kneeled on his neck for eight minutes, even as Floyd said he could not breathe. Autopsies have found that Floyd died of asphyxia.While Gaetz's tweet is still up, users have to click on it to see its contents. It's covered by a box that reads, "This Tweet violated the Twitter Rules about glorifying violence. However, Twitter has determined that it may be in the public's interest for the Tweet to remain accessible."

Democratic lawmakers called out Gaetz in response to the tweet and urged Twitter to remove it from the social media platform.

"Take the Gaetz tweet down right now @twitter. RIGHT NOW," Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) tweeted Monday night. "The survivors of mass shootings are lighting up my phone. They are scared to death this will inspire someone to start shooting into a crowd tonight. They are right."

After Twitter took action against his tweet, Gaetz said, "Their warning is my badge of honor."

"Antifa is a terrorist organization, encouraging riots that hurt Americans. Our government should hunt them down. Twitter should stop enabling them. I'll keep saying it," Gaetz said in a tweet that he pinned to the top of his profile page.

Donald Trump has demanded that the antifa movement be labeled a domestic terrorist organization.

However, as factcheck.org noted, "There is no such official federal designation for domestic terrorism organizations." Even if such a designation existed, the site said, it would be "difficult or questionable" to categorize antifa in that manner because it is not an organized group with a hierarchy and leadership.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.